Hamburg, Germany-based distributor and compounder of technical thermoplastics Albis Plastic GmbH has announced that effective January 2018, it will acquire Wipag Group, a specialist in the processing and production of carbon fiber compounds for injection molding.
The acquisition, says Albis, represents a further strengthening of its recycling activities. Wipag Group, with sites in Neuburg (Donau), and Gardelegen (both in Germany) has developed innovative, eco-friendly technologies that allow waste carbon fibre, mainly from the automotive industry, to be processed into reinforced carbon fiber compounds. Wipag also takes in high-quality recyclable post-industrial and post-consumer PP from various sources for use in its processes.
With access to carbon fiber through this acquisition, Albis will in the future also be offering polypropylene and nylon carbon-fiber-filled compounds. With their excellent mechanical properties and low density, PPCF compounds can provide a significant weight and cost advantage compared with highly-filled, glass-fiber-reinforced nylon. As 2021, the year even more stringent emission standards take effect, approaches, automotive OEMs are strongly motivated to explore new lightweighting possibilities, as failure to comply will result in stiff penalties.
According to Philip O. Krahn, CEO of Albis Plastic, Wipag has “cutting-edge and forward-looking CFRP technology” combined with years of experience in the closed-loop recycling business, from which Albis Plastic will benefit. In addition, Wipag's open-loop recycling activities – referring to the company's use of PP derived from post-industrial and post-consumer applications, will provide a platform for Albis' Altech Eco PP compounds and expand its range of high quality near-to-prime recycling compounds, which are already used in numerous applications for the automotive industry, Bernd Sparenberg, Vice President Technical Compounds at Albis pointed out.